stand out comedy final at liverpool comedy festival
Congratulations to the young contestants in last night's Stand Out final which was held at Radio Merseyside - and particularly to the winner Lewis Maxwell.
I was one of the judges at last night's event and boy was it a tough decision to choose one winner.
In fact, it wasn't easy to pick just two runners up as well.
Even more amazingly, all but two of the 10 finalists were only 12 years old, and whether it was sheer guts or genuine confidence, they were so self-assured up there on stage where they had to deliver a three-minute routine in front of family, friends and of course us the judges.
Sam Avery, from Liverpool Comedy Trust, said afterwards that some of them had better material than some of the adults he works with on the circuit. And I believe him!
Lewis's winning routine was a perfect arc of a comedy story which he delivered in an assured and accomplished fashio without looking as if was remotely memorised.
Rummer up Jack Freeman is a born showman, and had the audience rocking in their seats, and his fellow runner up Hannah Gough was fearless in her subject matter and reminded me of a young Sarah Millican.
Anyway, I want to pay tribute to all the finalists, so here are their names:
Jamie Lavelle, Mollie Davies, Lewis Maxwell, Jamie Hilton, Hannah Gough, Conor Equizi, Jack Freeman, Anna Rogan, Callum Crook and Beth Bowen.
Well done all.
You can hear some of them on Radio 4 Extra next week on Mel Giedroyc's 4 O'Clock Show each afternoon. Mel was compering last night's event (well, you have to take a break from The Great British Bake Off occasionally!) and seemed genuinely amazed and moved by the youngsters.
Incidently, I see from a glance at the schedules that tomorrow on Radio 4 Extra you can hear Paul O'Grady's homage to our city's comedians in Paul O'Grady Stands Up for Liverpool, broadcast at 9am and again at 7pm when he will celebrate everyone from Arthur Askey and Doddy to John Bishop.
And you can read more about the Stand Out final in tomorrow's Echo